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Isle of Iona, Scotland

Spirit of Celts

Portsmouth - Dublin - Example 13 Day Cruise aboard SH Vega
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Embark on a captivating 13-day Spirit of Celts cruise aboard SH Vega, exploring the British Isles with a light-hearted spirit. Start in historic Portsmouth, boasting a naval legacy and an enticing Historic Dockyard. Sail to Fowey, a Celtic-inspired Cornish town, and enjoy the wonderful selection of shops and eateries to explore. Discover the Isles of Scilly's breathtaking beauty, Tresco Abbey Garden, and historic landmarks. Explore Bantry's charming harbor, Dingle's rugged cliffs, and Galway's medieval charm. Killybegs offers a glimpse into Ireland's fishing history amidst stunning landscapes. Iona, steeped in spirituality, leads to Loch Ewe's naval history and Oban's scenic allure. Conclude your adventure in vibrant Dublin, delving into its rich cultural tapestry and iconic landmarks.
Rugged coastlines of the British IslesTurquoise waters surrounding the islandsAdventures in Europe. Scottish marine bandIona Abbey on the Isle of IonaExplore DublinStroll through historic DublinGet a taste of Dublin's nightlifeIsle of Iona, Scotland
Highlights
  • Discover Portsmouth's naval heritage and historic dockyard attractions
  • Experience the diverse attractions of the Isles of Scilly
  • Uncover Bantry's ancient history amidst picturesque surroundings
  • Roam through Dingle's craggy cliffs, hidden beaches, and historic sites
Places Visited
Activity Level: Variable
Activity options vary depending on destination and operator. Activity level is determined by the range and intensity of activities you choose to participate in. Discuss with your Trip Planner which options are best for you.
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Full Itinerary

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Day 1: Portsmouth, England

Arrive in Portsmouth, relax, and spend the overnight here preparing for your adventure.

*specific hotel and location to be announced

Day 2: Portsmouth, England | Embark

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Dinner
Your Anglo-French cruise begins in the UK’s only island city and the world’s oldest dry dock. With easy access by rail and road from airports in London and Southampton, Portsmouth has a long and proud naval heritage. Board your boutique ship, following in the footsteps of the likes of Admiral Nelson and Henry VIII as you settle in for your voyage. If time permits, the Portsmouth Historic Dockyard is definitely worth a visit. The attraction is home to a wonderful collection of famous historical ships including Lord Nelson’s HMS Victory, Queen Victoria’s HMS Warrior, and the only surviving ship from the First World War’s Gallipoli campaign, the HMS M.33. A very fitting way to begin your seafaring adventure.

Day 3: Fowey, England

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Returning back across the channel, arrive in the picturesque Cornish town of Fowey. With strong ties to its Celtic roots, this beautiful historical town has a wonderful selection of shops and eateries to explore. Nearby find the world-famous Eden Project and the Lost Gardens of Heligan. The port here is deep but small, so with your boutique cruise ship as the star attraction, you can be guaranteed a warm, friendly Cornish welcome.

Day 4: Tresco, Isles of Scilly, England

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Reach one of Britain’s most peaceful and beautiful places today. The Isles of Scilly are a low-lying archipelago that lies 45 kilometers off Cornwall. The Gulf Stream provides a mild climate in which flowers and other flora thrive and the Isles’ white-sand beaches and lapping translucent green sea could easily be mistaken for the Caribbean. From the world-famous Tresco Abbey Garden with its 20,000 species from all over the globe and Elizabethan castles to fortresses to Bronze Age sites and illuminating lighthouses, the Isles of Scilly boasts several outstanding attractions to be enjoyed.

Day 5: Bantry, Ireland

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Amid the headlands and islands of Ireland’s southwest, Bantry is a charming harbor town on Bantry Bay, The town is surrounded by ancient history. Kealkill megalithic stone circle and standing stones, 6th-century Kilnaruane Pillar Stone, and 16th-century Carraiganass Castle, all in prime walking territory. More recent is the grandiose early 18th-century Bantry House with its Italianate gardens pouring down to the water’s edge. The bay’s Garinish Island is a garden paradise while Seal Island is busy with friendly mammals.

Day 6: Dingle, Ireland

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
One of Ireland’s westernmost ports, on Dingle Peninsula, Dingle is a place of craggy cliffs, crashing waves, and hidden beaches. The historic fishing village sits on a lake-like estuary, its narrow mouth guarded by its Victorian lighthouse, reachable by a 6 km return coastal walk rich in viewpoints. Other hikes take in everything from mountain ridges to deserted beaches. Plenty of historic sites: medieval Garfinny Bridge over the Garfinny river, 15th-century Gallarus Castle, and Reask monastic site, parts dating back to the 6th century.

Day 7: Galway, Ireland

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
A harbor city on Ireland’s west coast, Galway has the air of Dublin, centered on 18th-century Eyre Square, with its elegant university and other stylish architecture, whether the playful design of the 1960s cathedral or widespread medieval creations. Head out for a world of walks, many exploring pristine stretches of coast. Galway Atlantaquaria, the National Aquarium of Ireland, sits on the waterfront and boasts more than 1,00 species from the Atlantic and its lakes and rivers.

Day 8: Killybegs, Ireland

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Killybegs is a small town located in County Donegal, Ireland. It is known for its beautiful scenery and friendly locals. The city is situated on the coast and has a bustling fishing industry. Visitors can take a tour of the harbor and learn about the history of the town’s fishing industry. The city is surrounded by stunning natural beauty, including mountains, forests, and beaches.

Day 9: Iona Island, Scotland

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
No matter your belief system, spending time on Iona is good for the soul. This isle, located in the Inner Hebrides which hugs close to the western coast of Scotland, has more than a millennium of spiritual connections. Barely 100 people reside in the spot where St Columba brought Christianity to Scotland, so it’s mostly untouched and untamed. Iona is famed for its abbey, which was found by Columba and his Irish followers in 563 CE. It was in these contemplative cloisters that the sacred treasure, the Book of Kells, was created. The illuminated manuscript was taken to Ireland in 807 CE in an attempt to keep it safe from marauding Vikings. Very little of the gorgeous granite sacred structure you see dates from these times, a Benedictine building was built on the original site in around 1200.

Day 10: Loch Ewe, Scotland

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
A sheltered deep water loch, Loch Ewe in the Scottish Highlands has a big Naval history. During World War II the Home Fleet stayed here, it was a base for Arctic convoys – and a post-war depot for captured German U-boats. NATO still has a base here for submarine servicing. The loch, with low-lying Ewe Island in the middle, is a beauty spot with Inverewe, a Victorian garden rich in exotic plants, sitting on the banks.

Day 11: Oban, Scotland

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
Oban is a beautiful seaside town located on the west coast of Scotland. It is known for its stunning natural beauty and rich history. The city is surrounded by miles of dramatic shores and beautiful countryside. Oban, also known as the Seafood Capital of Scotland, is home to the Oban Distillery, which produces some of Scotland’s finest whisky.

Day 12: Rathlin Island, Northern Island

  • Ship
  • 1 Breakfast, 1 Lunch, 1 Dinner
This mountainous, sparsely populated isle off the northern coast of Ireland is filled with interest. Attractions include the little harbor with its fishing boats, the lighthouse, a cave where Robert the Bruce hid after fleeing Scotland following his defeat by the English, a neolithic settlement site, and a puffin-packed RSPB seabird center.

Day 13: Dublin | Disembark

  • 1 Breakfast
Your cruise comes to an end today in Dublin, the Republic of Ireland’s capital. It’s at times gritty and in places, gorgeous – Georgian squares, hidden parks, and tree-lined canals. It’s lively, complex, cosmopolitan, and eminently walkable. So bid farewell to Vega and start exploring, if time allows before your flight home. Come full circle and visit The Long Room in the Old Library in stately Trinity College to inspect the Book of Kells, which was produced on Iona. The Long Room itself is much lauded for its beauty – it’s a stunning, two-story, barrel-vaulted space that houses 200,000 of Trinity’s oldest books and manuscripts. Elsewhere the new Museum of Literature Ireland, the National Museum of Ireland, Christ Church and St Patrick’s Cathedrals, the Guinness Storehouse, Kilmainham Gaol, and Glasnevin Cemetery entice visitors – just be sure to stop into a snug somewhere for a pint.

Ship/Hotel

SH Vega

SH Vega
SH Vega Club Lounge
SH Vega Club Lounge

Dates & Prices

My Preferred Start Date

Deals

Book early and save on 2025 departures
Book early and save on 2025 departures!

Plan the experience of a lifetime, and save on your 2025 adventure. Uncover the wonders of South America, experience authentic Africa, explore true wilderness in the Arctic or sail back in time revealing the secrets of the Mediterranean. Additional restrictions may apply. Please contact us for details.

 
Applicable to all 2025 departure dates.

Per person starting at
$10,124
Rates are subject to change without notice. Book early to get the best rate.
SH Vega Suite OceanViewOceanview
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Oceanview D4
19 m2, Oceanview staterooms features 2 single beds, bedroom and living room and a luxurious ensuite bathroom.
SH Vega Suite OceanViewOceanview
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Oceanview M4
19 m2, Oceanview staterooms features 2 single beds, bedroom and living room and a luxurious ensuite bathroom.
Balcony
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Balcony D5
28 m2, Located at the forward and aft of the ship, these balcony staterooms feature 2 single beds or double bed bedrooms with a living room area, a luxurious bathroom and your own private 6m2 balcony
Balcony
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Balcony M5
28 m2, Located at the center of the ship, these balcony staterooms feature 2 single beds or double bed bedrooms with a living room area, a luxurious bathroom and your own private 6m2 balcony
Balcony
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Balcony D6
28 m2, Located on deck six, these balcony staterooms feature 2 single beds or double bed bedroom with living room area, a luxurious bathroom and your own private 6m2 balcony
SH Vega SuitePremium suitePremium Suite
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Suite
44 m2, Our Suites features a super king bed and separate living room with and a soothing flame-effect fireplace a luxurious ensuite bathroom, and a 12 sq.m. private balcony.
SH Vega Suite PremiumSH Vega Suite PremiumPremium suitePremium Suite
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Premium Suite
49 m2, Our grandest suites feature a super king bed and separate living room with and a soothing flame-effect fireplace a luxurious ensuite bathroom, a spacious walk-in wardrobe, and a 12 sq.m private balcony.
Included
  • 12 Breakfasts, 10 Lunches, 11 Dinners
  • 12 Nights Accommodations
  • Accommodations as listed
  • Ground transportation as listed
  • Activities as listed
  • Meals as listed
  • Access to a 24-7 Emergency line while traveling
  • Room Service 
  • Wifi
  • Coffee, tea, soft drinks and selected alcoholic beverages available 24-hours per day
  • Lecture programs by our experienced expedition team and guest speakers
  • Onboard gratuities & port taxes
  • Branded Swan Hellenic expedition parka and use of rubber boots in Polar Regions.
  • Group return transfers from the airport to the cruise port (via our included accommodation where applicable)
  • One night pre-cruise accommodation with breakfast in a 4/5-star hotel or onboard
Excluded
  • Travel Insurance
  • Personal Expenses
  • Flight costs (please request a quote)
  • Additional excursions during free time
  • Fuel and transportation surcharges (when applicable)
  • Passport and Applicable Visa Expenses
  • We recommend every traveler to take out a travel cancellation insurance, travel interruption insurance and a travel health insurance policy with an assumption of the return transport costs of repatriation

Map

When to Go

Jan
Feb
Mar
Apr
May
Jun
Jul
Aug
Sep
Oct
Nov
Dec
Good to ideal period to travel, and many people choose to visit at this time.

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